Summer is starting to wind down. The kids are heading back to school, the sun is going away earlier and the warm days of summer are becoming less warm. If you're throwing a BBQ in the next few weeks, we have some ideas that can take it from awesome to awesomer. You can use both your BlackBerry smartphone and BlackBerry PlayBook to take things to the next level. Throw in an accessory or two -- like the sweet BlackBerry Music Gateway -- and your party will be the talk of the town.
It's Grill Time
If you're doing things right, you'll no doubt be firing up the grill (aka barbeque) and tossing on some hot dogs or burgers. It doesn't have to stop there however. You can check out some great apps like Cooklet to give you even more ideas to expand your party spread. Cooklet has plenty of recipes so you can find just what you need to spice up your meals. If you're on health kick and trying to slim down before the fall, try the free app Healthy Recipes.
If you seem to torch your steaks a bit more than you should, Steak Timer may be just what you need. This handy app reminds you when it's time to flip and when to pull your meat off the grill before it ends up in the trash. It's free and works great on the BlackBerry PlayBook.
Need something to pass the time when you're ignoring the side of the family you don't like? Be sure to check out Papa's Burgeria too. It's one of the first PlayBook games I bought and I've loved it ever since.
Stock Your Bar
I'm a part-time bartender so I know a drink or two, but if you don't know the difference between a Madras and a Bay Breeze, there are plenty of apps to help you out. My favorite is MixMentor HD for the PlayBook. It's stocked up with over 500 popular drink recipes that are sure to keep everyone happy. It even has a slew of drinking games you can play once the kids are in bed.
If you won't have your PlayBook handy or want to keep things on the down low, you can sneak EasyBartender onto your BlackBerry smartphone and sneak a peek at over 14,000 recipes including non-alcoholic drinks.
You can bring the fun of a social network into your party too. Just hop over to untappd.com and you can check-in with your favorite beer, cheers your friends and earn cool badges along the way.
Need some jokes to liven up the party? Free Funniest Bar Jokes can help you out there.
If neither of those suits your fancy, don't worry, there are plenty of others to choose from as well.
But what about the music you ask? Well we won't leave you hanging. You can really get things going thanks to the BlackBerry Music Gateway (check out our review here). This little guy will let you control the tunes right from your BlackBerry smartphone. Just plug it into an external speaker or sound system and walk away. You can stream music right from your device and even use something like Slacker or Pandora to keep the tunes flowing all day long. If your friends have an NFC BlackBerry you can just tap off and let them take control of the tunes too.
If you want to step it up a bit, why not try out your DJ skills with Pacemaker? Your PlayBook is transformed into turntables that let you mix music with automatic beat matching, loops and effects. It's sure to be a hit and you can even let your guests try their hand at it for some DJ karaoke. Pacemaker is available in both a lite and full version.
With these handy apps and tips at your side, your summer BBQ will be one that your friends won't soon forget.
What ideas do you have for using your BlackBerry at parties? Let us know in the comments!